MEMBERS OF the public are being urged to sign an e-petition supporting draft legislation on safer staffing. The petition calls for support for the Safe Nurse Staffing Levels (Wales) Bill, drawn up by Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Kirsty Williams. It has been set up by retired RCN member Richard Jones, who said: ‘This legislation is an opportunity to ensure a better future for my past colleagues and to set the tone for the future of the Welsh NHS.’ RCN Wales director Tina Donnelly said: ‘It is important that the public engage on a topic as important as this. Patients should no longer suffer because of insufficient staffing numbers on ward.’ The bill is due to be presented to the Welsh assembly health and social care committee this month. Go to

Public health services review expected to tackle inequalities THE SCOTTISH Government is to carry out a review of public health services to build on the progress made to tackle health inequalities. Integration of health and social care, Westminster welfare reforms and possible new powers for the Scottish parliament are likely to change how public health policy is seen, according to ministers. The review will begin this month and will report its first findings next summer. Minister for public health Michael Matheson said: ‘I want to lay down a challenge to the public health community. Public health practice is still primarily focused on prevention of disease and, of course, that work should continue. However, I want to see our efforts directed at a much wider remit, seeking to tackle the health inequalities that continue to plague Scottish society. This review will look at how we can best do that.’ NURSING MANAGEMENT

Barney Newman

RCN asks public to sign its petition on safe staffing levels

Seacole award winners for 2014 announced SIX NURSES developing innovative projects to reduce health inequalities among black and minority ethnic (BME) communities have received grants at the 2014 Mary Seacole Leadership and Development Awards. Projects to investigate leadership development of BME staff and to support parent-and-infant relationships in migrant families were among those recognised in a

Nurse numbers data reveal shortfalls in hundreds of hospitals MORE THAN half of England’s hospitals fail to meet their own safe staffing targets for nurses, according to a national patient safety website. Some 282 of the 521 hospitals that submitted nurse staffing data to the NHS Choices safety-indicators website fell short of their planned-versus-actual nursing numbers in August. Last year, the government announced that every hospital in England would be required to publish staffing levels online as part of a push for transparency after the Mid Staffs scandal. The safety-indicators website was launched in June this year by health secretary Jeremy Hunt and England’s chief nurse Jane Cummings. It allows the

ceremony at the RCN in London in October. England chief executive Simon Stevens attended the event. Four development grants worth £6,250 each and two leadership awards worth £12,500 each were handed out. This year’s Seacole scholars are pictured above. From left: Joy Shao, Parveen Ali, Selina Jarvis, Angela Ditchfield, Hille Halonen and Pamela Makwehe

public to search for hospitals and find out how they are performing in areas such as staffing, infection control and cleanliness, and how many patients have experienced harms such as pressure ulcers or falls. The latest nurse staffing levels data detail the planned-versus-actual staffing levels for all inpatient wards. They show that 239 hospitals met or exceeded their planned levels, while 44 hospitals were operating at 90% capacity or below. Safe Staffing Alliance chair Susan Osborne said the alliance had been contacted by staff working in hospitals where one nurse was expected to care for 14 patients. ‘Some trusts have the right levels, but a worrying amount do not,’ she said. Ms Osborne warned the data could be meaningless to the public because they do not indicate how many patients nurses are having to care for. See also feature, page 20-21 December 2014 | Volume 21 | Number 8

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Seacole award winners for 2014 announced.

SIX NURSES developing innovative projects to reduce health inequalities among black and minority ethnic (BME) communities have received grants at the ...
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